Thursday, December 25, 2008


Oh, my friends. This has been a fabulous Christmas! One of the best Christmases I can remember, in fact. And the celebrating isn't even over yet!

I HAD to quickly post a Christmas-Eve-dinner recap, though, because if I don't write it now, I might forget how freaking AWESOME it was.

First, the food:

Appetizers included a baked brie with apricots, served with crackers and other dippers and a gorgeous fruit plate. These were served with champagne, courtesy of my awesome older sis. (Who is also pretty dang beautiful. See pic.).

Dinner was the rib roast, garlic mashed potatoes, Dad's consistently amazing salad, green bean bundles (wrapped with bacon. Hello, flavor!), rolls, and the requisite water/sweet tea/red wine.

Dessert was a reallyreally rich trifle that I made with devil's food cake, raspberries, strawberries, and whipped cream flavored with vanilla, coffee, and amaretto. In addition, we sampled from what was perhaps the most attractive chocolate tray I have ever seen. (See pic at right. Was I kidding? No.)

As for my promised post-roast report, here it is: I am now apparently a rib roast diety of some sort, even though what I did was really basic. Following a Martha Stewart recipe, I rubbed the outside of the roast with a mixture of olive oil, flour, salt, pepper, and a hint of sugar. I put it, uncovered, in a preheated oven (450 degrees) for 15 minutes. Then, I kicked the heat down to about 350 degrees and continued roasting, basting frequently with beef broth and pan juices, for another 2 1/2 hours or so. I took the roast out when the meat thermometer registered 145 degrees.

And the roast was perfect. PERFECT. It was nice and pink on the inside, super-juicy, and really tender. (We were able to cut it with butter knives.) Hubs carved it with his customary dexterity (look how sweet he is, standing there with dad!), and we Ate. It. Up. We have some leftovers, and we've already made a killer beef stew to nosh on. We have plans for a shepherd's pie as well. Any other ideas?

After dinner, we lazed around and watched the kids play. We opened presents and just talked and laughed and had the best time. My older sis read the Christmas story out of the Bible, then we threw the kids in the bath. Remember that time before when I lamented that I forgot my camera? I brought it this time! Aren't they the sweetest things EVER? I could post about 15 pictures here, but I'm going to exercise restraint and just give you one.

Then, we bundled up booger and headed for home, where he went straight to bed while we set up his Christmas presents. This morning, hubs and I had our traditional breakfast (little sandwiches made from spiral-sliced ham and Sister Schubert rolls, accompanied by mimosas) while booger played with his new toys.

We spent the rest of the day completely relaxing, talking, making alot of really bad jokes, playing with the baby, and watching movies (reviews to follow).

Still on tap - Some one-on-one time with little sis tomorrow (before she heads back to the snowy north), Dinner with family at the Mediterranean Cafe on Friday night, going out on the town with friends visiting the area for the holidays on Saturday night, and Christmas with hubs' family. Whew! We will be some busy little people!

I hope that you all had the very merriest of Christmases!! May your holiday season be warm, wonderful, and filled with those you love.


Style Expert said...

Glad you had a great Christmas! Happy New Year!

Sandi said...

OK you lost me at chocolate bar. LOL. Glad you had a good holiday with your family and all that food!

Supermom said...

That rib roast looks freaking amazing! You couldn't paint it more perfectly.


Heidi said...

I stumbled onto your blog this morning (We like the same movies, "The Quiet American" and "Proof," which is how I found you).
I really have enjoyed reading it -- you're a good writer.
Would you be so kind as to share your recipe for that trifle? I want to make it!

Hope you and yours have a Happy New Year.
Heidi Rafferty
Harrodsburg, Kentucky

Nicole Bradshaw said...

Heidi -

Thanks and welcome! I made the trifle based on this recipe:, BUT I made a good number of substitutions.

1.) I subbed out the kiwi for equal parts raspberries and strawberries. I wanted red fruit only.

2.) I nixed the sweetened condensed milk (not a fan) in favor of extra whipping cream. Tu make up for the lost sugar, I added a 1/2 cup or so of confectioner's sugar. I also added generous slugs of vanilla, cold coffee and amaretto to my whipped cream for flavor. (I just tasted as I went until it tasted right to me.)

3.) I skipped the orange juice. (Not a fan.)

4.) I topped my trifle with chocolate shavings. Yummmm . . .

It was fantastic! Note that on the recipe link, the recipe is scaled for 12 servings. You may want to scale it down unless you are feeding ALOT of people.

Regardless, you will have plenty of devil's food cake left over to use in other stuff, so plan on other applications for that. (No problem in this household! HA!)